A lazy person's guide to buying Diwali gifts
Stationery lovers, caffeine addicts and skincare enthusiasts – there’s something for everyone
‘Fast forward’ isn’t just what you do on old VCRs or while you’re binge-watching Netflix. At least not according to my sassy father. It’s a term he pretends to have invented decades ago. All the Diwali gifts that we receive that seem a little impersonal or out of character from the gift-giver are deemed ‘FF-ed’— i.e, the gift-giver has failed at Diwali shopping, and simply pushed forward one from his own pile of received gifts.
Ah, the holiday season. A time for family, friends, new outfits, pretty lights, colourful makeup looks and amazing food. A time to dress up, socialise, and find the appropriate Diwali gifts to carry along at all the taash parties you’re invited to and for all the friends and family members you still like.
If you’re anything like me, you’ve been contemplating your gift plan for days… weeks even. You’ve made a list of names, staring at the words as your brain does the mental maths of all the choices and prices. But Diwali is now nearly upon us and you’ve done diddly squat for Diwali gifts.
The good news? A lot of brands and labels have made the lives of reluctant shoppers and couch potatoes easier — with a range of hampers and gift boxes especially designed as Diwali gifts. All you need to do is think about the person you’re gifting – is she a vegan health-nut or stationery lover whose Post-it collection is running out? Is she an enthusiastic host with a penchant for well-laid dinner tables?
Luckily there’s still time to place orders for Diwali gifts, so get moving.
Diwali gifts that you can take credit for
For the stationery lover
1. Stationery Gift Set from Origin One
There are two kinds of people in the world, the kind that adds notes to their mobile phones and the other that owns a planner, desk calendar, to-do-list notepad… you get the drift. Ideal for the latter is the Stationery Gift Set for Origin One, which includes a sleek A5 notebook, postal stickers, passport notebook, gift envelope, baggage tag and more. Gift-wrapped in black paper and twine, you can top it off with a customised handwritten notecard for an added personal touch. The best part is they ship globally so you can send it to loved ones around the world. Price: ₹1,500 (+ shipping and tax)
2. Match Books from Sky Goodies
One with a lock that says “Keep out if you know what’s good for you” to one featuring the artwork of Andy Warhol, my notebook collection brings me great pride. For fellow collectors, I’d turn to Sky Goodies, who have recently turned
quintessentially Indian truck art and classic matchbox artworks into covers of vividly coloured notebooks. These come in a set of 6 notebooks with the spine designed like a matchbox spark strip. Price: ₹1,614 (+ shipping)
3. Flight Stationery Set from Nicobar
Letter writers in this day are few and far between — and we must celebrate and encourage them. Nicobar’s box holds ten ivory cards that are embossed with cute little aeroplanes, paired with envelopes featuring a graphic blue flap. The pineapple stickers are our favourite part of the bundle. Price: ₹950
For the make-up and skincare-guru-in-the-making
1. Goddess Saraswati Gift Box from Forest Essentials
The luxury Ayurveda brand has designed perfect gifting boxes, drawing from Indian mythology and inspired by the timeless stories and rituals passed on from generations. With frame-worthy illustrations on the packaging and an expert curation inside. The box packs in velvet silk body cream, shower wash, body mist, body oil and a luxury soap, because why have one when you can have it all? Price: ₹5,400
2. Happiness Gift Bundle from Bare Necessities
The zero-waste brand has put together a hamper of eco-friendly goodies for green-warrior in your life. The handcrafted hamper contains a coffee scrub, bath salts, 2 spa bars, lip balm and a postcard. Good for your skin and karma, too. Price: ₹1,600
3. Diwali Eye Kit by MAC Cosmetics
M.A.C Cosmetics has released a limited-edition eye makeup kit that includes everything the make-up diva in your life will need for a lit look this Diwali. It includes a pressed powder palette of 8 pigmented eyeshadows and a highlighter, liquid eyeliner, a mini black volume and curl mascara and a mini oil-based makeup remover. If you buy it from Nykaa.com, you’ll even get a complimentary MAC mini Prep + Prime Fix+ which is one of their best-sellers. Price: ₹5,500
For the gourmand
1. Artisanal Chocolate Diwali Gift Pack from Mason & Co.
Organic, vegan, gluten and soy-free, Mason & Co. creates fine chocolates in a variety of flavours that satisfy a sweet tooth without overdosing on sugar. This pack of 6 contains their 49 per cent Crunchy Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate, 65 per cent Semi-Sweet Dark Chocolate, 70 per cent Sea Salt Dark Chocolate, 70 per cent Black Sesame & Raisin Dark Chocolate, 5 per cent Zesty Orange Dark Chocolate and 85 per cent Intense Dark Chocolate. It’s chocolate that isn’t a cheat meal at all. Need we say more?
2. Coffee Gift Pack from Blue Tokai Coffee Roasters
‘Tis the season to coffee. (I kid, all-year round is the season to coffee). Blue Tokai does packs of 4 and 6 of their delicious coffee in graphic, screen-printed boxes. Each pouch contains 75 grams of the coffee of your choice from their collection and it’s a perfect perk for the coffee fanatics in your life. Price: ₹800 (+ shipping)
3. Zero Waste Diwali Gift Hamper from Satvyk
Satvyk has curated a holistic, zero-waste hamper with a variety of goodies that’ll make life that much easier for your health-conscious friends and family. The hamper includes a Khichdi mix, gulkand, virgin coconut oil, pumpkin seeds, Himalayan salt and even a nut mix for healthy snacking – as an eco-friendly bonus, it even includes a bamboo toothbrush, steel straw and cleaner. They pretty much thought of everything, and you can get the credit. Price: ₹1,199
For the aesthete (read: the one who’s a responsible home-owner)
1. Shiraz Red Wine Stem Glasses from Good Earth
We love everything from Good Earth, but for this occasion, their set of 6 wine glasses make the perfect addition to Diwali taash parties. These elegant glasses feature Good Earth’s signature motif at the base with a delicate platinum-coloured rim. Price:
2. Donburi Shallow Bowls from Nicobar
Nicobar’s Donburi bowls are handmade, microwave and dishwasher safe. The set of 5 porcelain bowls are decorated with fine indigo and white detailing, motifs and prints. Price ₹ 5,800
3. Quest Soy Candles from Niana
The Timeless Collection by Niana features luxurious soy candles set in bone china. I love Quest, one of the two fragrances in this collection. It’s an aromatic play of amber, floral and woody notes with musk at its heart. These are a true olfactory experience with a scent that lingers on—subtly. Price 1,450 (set of two)